The Houston Texans have been surrounded by trade rumors all year regarding star quarterback Deshaun Watson, whose legal issues have kept him off the field. Still, Watson has been drawing the interest of teams despite those issues, a testament to his talent on the field, among other things. New Texans head coach Lovie Smith is tasked with not only answering constant questions about Watson, but, along with the front office, figuring out exactly what to do with the star quarterback. Smith spoke about Watson on Wednesday and offered an eye-opening take on the Texans star, as reported by Sarah Barshop of ESPN.

Lovie Smith commended Deshaun Watson as an excellent football player, interestingly saying that such players “need to be playing somewhere in the NFL.”

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First of all, it’s interesting that Smith would use such wording, as the problem has never been Watson’s ability on the field. It’s been his legal issues, which the Texans head coach is conveniently avoiding. Of course, Smith is likely just trying to tread lightly amid the media firestorm surrounding Watson right now.

Perhaps of greater note is that Smith feels that things will eventually end up benefiting both Watson and the Texans down the road. If things end up benefiting Watson, that likely means he is wearing a different uniform in 2022.